RETAIL SPENDING GROWING

RETAIL SPENDING GROWING

QUEENSLAND retailers raked in $5.85 billion in December, says the latest ABS Retail Trade figures.

The seasonally-adjusted figure is up 0.2 per cent on the corresponding month last year and nationally, year on year figures show there was a 5.7 per cent rise in retail spending in 2013.

Australian Retailers Association (ARA) Executive Director Russell Zimmerman says the national 0.5 percent increase in monthly retail trade figures is a positive sign for the retail industry following previous weak Christmas sales and the industry is expecting the January results to show further improvement.

“We are certainly expecting higher trade results in January, as there have been reports that the post-Christmas sales period was extremely successful, fuelled largely by booming Boxing Day sales,” says Zimmerman.

“Anecdotally, a number of retailers I have spoken to since Christmas have been blown away by how enormous Boxing Day was and we expect this will be evident in January’s retail trade figures.”

Food retailers led the gains, with a 2.5 per cent increase on the previous year, while cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services (0.5 per cent) and department stores (0.3 per cent) also enjoyed some revenue boost.

These rises were partially offset by falls in other retailing (-3.1 per cent), clothing, footwear and personal accessory retailing (-2.1 per cent) and household goods retailing (-0.2 per cent).

“It’s no surprise that food retailing and cafes, restaurants and takeaway food services were large contributors to the December results due to the warm weather and social events associated with Christmas parties, celebrations and end-of-year holidays,” says Zimmerman.

In volume terms, turnover rose 0.9 per cent in the December quarter 2013, seasonally adjusted, following a rise of 0.8 per cent in the September quarter 2013.

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